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Del Mar Closing Week Recap

Del Mar Recap: August 29

Fast main track and firm turf course. Three front running sprint winners on dirt (5f, 5f, 6f). The winning turf course running styles were a stalker at eleven furlongs, and a late runner at a mile and an eighth (rail at 24 feet).  

Joe Talamo booted home a pair. Peter Miller saddled two winners.   

August 29 Claims: Race 2 - Just Kidding ($16k, Steve Knapp), My Farmer ($16k, Robert Hess Jr), Gentrified ($16k, Vann Belvoir). Race 3 - Miss Bennet ($32k, Matthew Chew), Curryforthree Bang ($32k, Joe Herrick). Race 4 - So Long Sailor ($16k, Eric Kruljac), Topgallant ($16k, Jonathan Wong). Race 6 - Oscar Dominguez ($40k, Peter Miller).

Generous Portion Stakes Recap (8-29-18) - Winner: Creative Instinct

Creative Instinct was the overwhelming favorite in this CA-bred stakes sprint, and she dueled with live first timer Mucho Unusual. The Creative Cause chalk was a bit too much for the newcomer, and she ended up winning by 2-1/4 lengths under Tyler Baze. The runner-up ran a big debut race for Flavien Prat and Tim Yakteen. If she shows up in a state bred MSW affair next time, she probably wins at low odds. Swing Thoughts was well behind the top two in 3rd, and Time for Suzzie, Dichotomy, and Be Lifted Up completed the order of finish.  

Creative Instinct Horse Racing Handicapping Past Performances 

Del Mar Recap: August 30

Fast main track and firm turf course. One front running winner at 5.5 furlongs on dirt. The winning turf course running styles were a front runner at five furlongs, a closer at one mile, a midpack stalker at one mile, and a dueling front runner at five furlongs (rail at 24 feet). 

Mario Gutierrez booted home a pair. Flavien Prat and Phil D’Amato teamed up for two wins. Doug O’Neill saddled two winners.  

August 30 Claims: Race 2 - Anvil Rock ($50k, Thomas R. Bell II). Race 3 - Tinabud ($50k, Jeff Mullins), Lexington Grace ($50k, Leonard Powell). Race 6 - Sigur Ross ($20k, Andy Mathis), Fire to the Wire ($20k, Jack Carava), Ketos ($20k, Paul Aguirre), R Cha Cha (claim voided, reason vet), Closing Time (claim voided, reason vet). Race 8 - Weather Market ($20k, Michael Pender).   
Del Mar Recap: August 31

Fast main track and firm turf course. Two front running winners on dirt (8f, 5.5f). The winning turf course running styles were a front runner at one mile, a midpack stalker at 8.5 furlongs, and a patient runner at five furlongs  (rail at 12 feet). 

Mario Gutierrez and Geovanni Franco both booted home a pair. Doug O’Neillsaddled two winners.  

August 31 Claims: Race 1 - Buckstopper Kit ($40k, Marty Jones). Race 3 - Harlequin ($80k, John Sadler). Race 4 - Baroque ($8k, Manuel Calvario), Trapalanda ($8k, Jeff Mullins). Race 6 - Missmachupicchu ($50k, Peter Miller). Race 7 - Operandi ($20k, Andrew Lerner).

I’m Smokin Recap (8-31-18) - Winner: Listing

First time starter Listing was let go at 22-1, but he clearly had game and stalked, pounced, and upset Policy and Oliver. Silken Prince was the favorite, but he broke slow again and could not make up the deficit this time in a disappointing 4th place finish. Bea’s Boy, Irish Heatwave, hey Sal, and Eighty Proof trailed. 

Listing Horse Racing Handicapping Past Performances 
 Del Mar Recap: September 1

Fast main track and firm turf course. Forwardly placed runners definitely held the edge on the main track today. Two front running winners on dirt (6f, 7f). The winning turf course running styles were a patient runner at five furlongs, two closers at one mile, a stalker at one mile, and a patient runner at a mile and an eighth (rail at 12 feet). 

Drayden Van Dyke and Flavien Prat both guided home three winners. Bob Baffertsaddled a pair of 2-year-old debut winners and Van Dyke rode both.  

September 1 Claims: Race 2 - Moon Kitty ($32k, Jack Carava), Lady Ninja ($32k, Richard Baltas), Duranga (claim voided, reason vet). Race 3 - Ransomed ($40k, Vann Belvoior), Causeway Carolyn ($40k, Manuel Calvario), Lightning Dove ($40k, Hector Palma). Race 6 - Wind Tartare ($40k, Vann Belvoir). Race 7 - Johnny Strong ($16k, Michele Dollase), Candyman Garret ($16k, Jeff Mullins).  

Grade I Del Mar Debutante Recap (9-1-18) - Winner: Bellafina

Bellafina had every possible advantage in this spot. She drew outside in this compact field and had already started twice, including a razor sharp local stakes win in the G2 Sorrento, while her her two main rivals (Mother Mother, Brill) were both exiting debut maiden wins. Positional speed and experience won the day, as Bellafina sat just off the flank of Mother Mother and pulled clear to win by 4+ lengths for Flavien Prat and Simon Callaghan. Baffert trainee Mother Mother was clearly second best, and Boujie Girl checked in 3rd. Brill was a flat 4th, and Watch Me Burn retreated to last after pressing the pace early.

Bellafina Horse Racing Handicapping Past Performances 
Grade II John C. Mabee Recap (9-1-18) - Winner: Vasilika

Trips made all of the difference between the top two finishers in this graded turf affair at a mile and an eighth. Fahan Mura opened up a clear early lead as expected, and Flavien Prat patiently rode Vasilika in midpack. Drayden Van Dyke was content to sit and wait in 9th place aboard course specialist Cambodia, and those tactics proved costly. Vasilika got the jump on the late runners and ended up winning by a length and a half. Cambodia was grinding away and did not have the acceleration to catch the winner, but she did go by front runner Fahan Mura to land the place. Meal Ticket chased and held 4th, and fellow chasers Sophie P and Achira were next across the line. The Tulip, Madame Stripes, Midnight Crossing, Cheekaboo, and a fading Vagabond Princess completed the order of finish.   
Del Mar Recap: September 2

Fast main track and firm turf course. Three front running winners on dirt (86, 6.5f, 6f). The winning turf course running styles were a patient runner at 8.5 furlongs, a closer at one mile, a closer at a mile and an eighth, and a stalker at one mile. 

Drayden Van Dyke guided home three winners, and Flavien Prat booted home a pair. Richard Baltas and Jerry Hollendorfer both saddled two winners.   

September 2 Claims: Race 2 - Empress of Lov ($16k, Genaro Vallejo), Girl Drama ($16k, Bill Spawr). Race 9 - Stringent ($20k, Dan Blacker), Bow and Arrow ($20k, Vann Belvoir), Ninety Nine Proof ($20k, Peter Miller).

Del Mar Juvenile Turf Recap (9-2-18) - Winner: King of Speed

These juvenile turf routes are frequently competitive, and 15-1 longshot King of Speed rallied for the win under Gary Stevens. Post time favorite Hartel stalked, took the lead, and outmaneuvered Takeo Squared for the place. Forloveofcountry rallied from last to complete the superfecta, and was followed by Honcho, Knight’s Cross, Owning, Seeking Refuge, Rijeka, and Street Image (pulled up, walked off).

Grade II Del Mar Derby Recap (9-2-18) - Winner: Ride a Comet

Saratoga shipper Ride a Comet uncorked a big late run to win this nine furlong turf stakes affair for 3-year-olds. Drayden Van Dyke rode the impressive winner for Mark Casse. Kazan has really improved as a gelding for Simon Callaghan, and the 50-1 outsider rallied to snatch the place away from strong favorite River Boyne. The latter was always well placed under Flavien Prat, and he took over in the lane, but could not hold off the top two. Majestic Eagle was another neck back in 4th, and was followed by Restrainedvengence, Desert Stone, Arawak, Epical, Pubilius Syrus, Andesh, and Take the One O One. Animosity tried to rear up and was held by the assistant starter at the break, and was declared a non-starter.   

Ride A Comet Horse Racing Handicapping Past Performances 

Del Mar Recap: September 3

Fast main track and firm turf course. One dueling front running winner at six furlongs on dirt . The winning turf course running styles were a stalker at one mile, a closer at 8.5 furlongs, a front runner at one mile, and a stalker at 8.5 furlongs. 

Agapito Delgadillo and leading rider Drayden Van Dyke both booted home a pair on closing day. Bob Baffert saddled two winners.   

September 3 Claims: Race 2 - Tiger Mom ($7k, Jonathan Wong), Christy Jackson ($8k, Robert Hess Jr). Race 3 - Sterling’s Temple ($20k, Genaro Vallejo). Race 6 - Secreto Primero ($25k, Robert Hess Jr), Glorious Crown ($25k, William Morey).

Del Mar Juvenile Fillies Turf Recap (9-3-18) - Winner: Summering

Summering dominated the paper race, and she comfortably won by a length and a quarter while in the hunt throughout for Drayden Van Dyke and Tom Proctor. Lady Prancealot rallied from 11th and last to land the place, and Bizwhacks stalked, pounced, and held 3rd by a neck over Posh Holly. Noble Contessa battled on the pace and weakened to 5th, and was followed by Kathryn’s Sky, Hype Park Corner, Imperial Creed, Be a Shero, After the Rose, and Angel Alessandra.

C. E. R. F. Stakes Recap (9-3-18) - Winner: Miss Sunset

Defending champion Miss Sunset was the strong choice to repeat, and she  chased longshot front runner Dis Smart Cat and prevailed by a length and a half under Mike Smith. Show It N Moe It just nipped the aforementioned front runner for 2nd, and Lake Time was 4th. Classy Tune, Time for Ebby, and Phantom Proton trailed.

Grade I Del Mar Futurity Recap (9-3-18) - Winner: Game Winner

Bob Baffert figured to win this race for the fourteenth time, but most thought he would get the job done with Roadster. Rowayton ran off to a clear early lead, and was still 2+ lengths to the good in the lane, but he started to crack with a furlong to go, and Baffert's other entrant Game Winner went right on by to score by a length and a half under Mario Gutierrez. Rowayton held 2nd by a 1/2 length over Roadster, and Sigalert was more than eight lengths back in 4th. Spin Lightning and Sparky Vale trailed. 

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